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Page last updated at 06:06 GMT, Friday, 1 May 2009 07:06 UK
Today: Friday 1 May 2009

PLEASE NOTE: We are unable to offer transcripts for our programme interviews. Today is broadcast live and the running order is subject to change.

Mexico is beginning a five-day shutdown of parts of its economy in a bid to slow the spread of swine flu. Bankers made an "astonishing mess" of the financial system and the effects will be felt for generations, MPs say. And Labour must "avoid self-inflicted wounds" and "get back to old-fashioned politics", former minister David Blunkett has warned the party.


The effects of the continuing banking crisis will be felt for generations, a committee of MPs has warned. Labour MP John McFall, chairman of the Treasury committee - which produced the report, discuss how "bankers have made an astonishing mess of the financial system".


The government has won a series of votes on planned MPs' expenses reforms, after it agreed to delay a decision on controversial second homes allowances. Veteran Conservative MP Sir Patrick Cormack explains why he voted against all the changes.


US carmaker Chrysler will file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection immediately and has formed an alliance with Fiat, President Obama has said. North America business correspondent Greg Wood tells the story of the first major industrial victim of the recession.

Business news with Nick Cosgrove.


There was a time, not so long ago, when astronomers thought they knew pretty much everything there was to know about the universe. Science correspondent Tom Feilden reports on recent observations which have brought fundamental physical laws into question.

Sports news with Garry Richardson.

Tony Wonnacott, from Devon, who has just won £310,000 with a £2 bet, has offered up the Today programme racing tips for Friday:

3.30 Sirvino
4.05 Hamish Mcgonagall

3.55 Ceremonial Jade
5.05 Montbretia

5.40 Kotkimix

8.25 Safari Journey

He says he would put on a £1 accumulator and a 50p each way accumulator if he was laying out a £2 stake.


Eight cases of swine flu in the UK have now been confirmed. A total of 230 are being investigated. Infectious disease epidemiology expert Professor Sir Roy Anderson, rector of Imperial College, London, discusses what should be believed about the likelihood of a pandemic.

Today's papers.


Prize-winning author Kazuo Ishiguro is one of Britain's most successful writers. Arts correspondent Rebecca Jones talks to him about a new collection of stories all based around the subject of music.

Thought for the day with Dom Antony Sutch, a Benedictine monk.


"The culture within parts of British banking has increasingly been one of risk-taking, leading to the meltdown," an MPs' report says. Business editor Robert Peston and Angela Knight, chief executive of the British Bankers' Association, discuss how the bankers have made "an astonishing mess".


The Labour Party must "get back to old-fashioned politics" because it "has lost its political antennae", former Home Secretary David Blunkett has warned. He discusses if the instincts that kept Labour in power are rapidly being lost.


The new Poet Laureate is to be revealed at an event in Manchester. Poets Michele Roberts and Roger McGough discuss if the Scottish poet Carol Ann Duffy is the most likely choice for the post.

Sports news with Garry Richardson.


The British mission in Iraq lasted six years, one month and 11 days. Padre Jim Aitchison, of the 20th Armoured Brigade, discusses the ceremony been held in Basra to mark the official end of military operations and what the future holds for Iraq.


"We have gone demented" and lost any sense of proportion about the scale of swine flu, Guardian columnist Simon Jenkins claims. He discusses if predictions about pandemics are doing more harm than good with virologist Professor John Oxford, at St Bartholomew's and the Royal London Hospital.


An interesting game of cricket between the Afghanistan national team and Ditchling cricket club, who have travelled to Afghanistan from their home in Sussex. Kabul correspondent Martin Patience reports as the game gets underway.


The streets of the Philippines will fall quiet as a nation sits down to watch its hero, Manny Pacquiao, fight Manchester's Ricky Hatton in Las Vegas. Correspondent Mike Costello reports on the popularity of Mr Pacquiao in his home country.

Business news with Nick Cosgrove.


What are the facts about the effects of migration from abroad on UK society? A £5m research programme by the Compas research centre at Oxford University is being launched to find out. Director of the centre Prof Michael Keith explains what could be discovered.


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